Spiraling between qualitative and quantitative data on women's health behaviors: A double helix model for mixed methods

Sheryl Mendlinger, Julie Cwikel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations

Abstract

A double helix spiral model is presented which demonstrates how to combine qualitative and quantitative methods of inquiry in an interactive fashion over time. Using findings on women's health behaviors (e.g., menstruation, breast-feeding, coping strategies), we show how qualitative and quantitative methods highlight the theory of knowledge acquisition in women's health decisions. A rich data set of 48 semistructured, in-depth ethnographic interviews with mother-daughter dyads from six ethnic groups (Israeli, European, North African, Former Soviet Union [FSU], American/Canadian, and Ethiopian), plus seven focus groups, provided the qualitative sources for analysis. This data set formed the basis of research questions used in a quantitative telephone survey of 302 Israeli women from the ages of 25 to 42 from four ethnic groups. We employed multiple cycles of data analysis from both data sets to produce a more detailed and multidimensional picture of women's health behavior decisions through a spiraling process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)280-293
Number of pages14
JournalQualitative Health Research
Volume18
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2008

Keywords

  • Immigrant populations
  • Knowledge acquisition
  • Mixed methods
  • Research models
  • Women's health

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